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Chinese Studies

Photo of Conner Baciunas.


Conner Balciunas is a double major in Chinese Studies and Anthropology.  A South Bend, Indiana, native, he shares thoughts on why he chose to major in Chinese Studies and what he gained from studying abroad. Read more here.

Majoring in Chinese Studies

The Chinese Studies major offers diverse courses in Chinese language, history, literature, culture, religion and film. Students acquire the general literacy and appreciation of the richness and variety of traditional and modern Chinese studies and the fundamentals of a multicultural education. With Chinese noted among the fastest growing skills in cloud computing and ecommerce according to a recent Indeed report, studying Chinese opens the door to career opportunity.

Upon completion of the program, students majoring in Chinese Studies may choose to enter a field directly or indirectly-related to their studies. Possible careers include:

  • Technology Industry
  • Government/NGO/Non-profit Employment
  • International Business/Management Position
  • Translator/Interpreter
  • Program Manager in Government Agencies focusing on Asia/China
  • English Teacher in Chinese-speaking regions
  • Chinese Language and Culture Teaching Professional
  • Graduate or Professional School

Average Starting Salary: $42,041

All Purdue University College of Liberal Arts majors prepare students with the skills identified as contributing to professional success: communicating and listening well, an understanding and appreciation of diverse points of view, creative thinking and problem solving, a collaborative mindset, the ability to synthesize complex ideas and communicate them clearly, and a Boilermaker work ethic.

Research in recent years confirms the many cognitive benefits of learning a second language. In addition, Chinese Studies majors develop skills that are applicable to many different careers. These skills may include, but are not limited to:

  • A global/cultural awareness of the social and political relationships that shape the world.
  • Understanding of different cultures and countries, cultivated both by study abroad opportunities and on-campus curricular and co-curricular experiences.
  • Ability to communicate and work productively with diverse groups of people.
  • Aptitude at translating messages simultaneously into specified languages, maintaining message, content, context, and style as much as possible.
  • Experience reading written materials, such as legal documents, scientific works, literary texts, or news reports, and rewriting material into specified languages.
  • Ability to plan, execute, and disseminate research findings from different vantage points.

Cultural Studies majors may choose to enter into the workforce using the skills they have acquired at Purdue or to attend graduate school upon completion of their degree. Past graduates have gone on to:


  • Purdue University
  • Rensselaer Central School Corporation
  • Kochi Prefecture Board of Education
  • Blue Sky Marketing

Graduate School

  • University of Hawaii - Manoa
  • Duke University
  • Indiana University
  • University of Maryland - College Park
  • Kent State University

CLA Career Center